water

Good news for Faulder Water

Well, that only took a decade! Great news nonetheless:

The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) has received approval from the Interior Health Authority to rescind both the Water Quality Advisory for uranium (issued August, 2007) and the Water Quality Advisory for commissioning the new system (issued February 14, 2017). As this is a new treatment system the potential for subsequent advisories exists, however the system is currently showing consistent acceptable results for bacteriological quality and uranium removal. We will continue to monitor all aspects of the system closely.

Link to press releaser

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Make water work (and crush Naramata)

The Okanagan Basin Water Board has launched a pledge program to increase awareness of its Make Water Work conservation program. The focus on the program is on domestic outdoor "non-working" water: lawns and shrubs that (a) look nice but don't do anything and (b) lose water to evaporation.  Working water, in contrast, creates economic benefit (agriculture, golf).  And domestic indoor water use is generally returned to the basin (through the water treatment plant or eventually seepage to the aquifer from your septic field).

May 2017 Sage Mesa system boil water notice

The Sage Mesa water system is on a boil water notice.  See here:

Why?  The Sage Mesa does not filter or otherwise treat its water beyond dosing it with chlorine.  Chlorine is less effective when the water is turbid.  Below is a photo of Okanagan Lake near the Sage Mesa water system intake:

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Faulder Water System April 2017 update

From RDOS Public Works:

Currently we have one uranium removal canister online. The results are very promising as our uranium levels to date have all been below the maximum allowable. Our bacterial results have also been good.  We will be brining on a second canister next week. After some monitoring and as long as the results follow the current trend we will discuss removal of the water advisory with the IHA.

 

The issue at this point is that the operator of the public water system (RDOS Public Works) has to convince the regulator (Interior Health) that the system is safe.  This requires some time to collect sufficient data.

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West Bench Hill Road

Here we go again: Anyone who doubts the instability of West Bench soils should take a look at the new dip on West Bench Hill Road.  This dip is in a slightly different place than the previous large dip.  A few things to know about this problem:

West Bench metered water rates

A study of potential approaches to metered water pricing was provided at the September 15th RDOS Environment and Infrastructure Committee meeting.  I extracted pages from my own marked-up copy of the board report:

West Bench water rate structure review

The consultant recommends a 30% variable + 70% fixed rate with a farm rate.  Public information sessions will be held on this issue in early November.  Standby for more information.

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February 2016 Faulder Water Update

Just a follow-up to the February 2nd, 2016, meeting in the old Summerland library:  I have attached the two relevant pages for the 2016 Budget.  The first is the operating budget for the water utility.  It shows the revenues for the system, including the parcel tax ($136,390/79 = ~$1,726 per household).  The second is the "capital projects" budget, which is meant to be temporary (lasting for the duration of the capital project).  The capital budget shows the large amounts in (debt proceeds and grants) and the large amounts out (capital spending).  The "steady state" revenue and expenses are shown in the operating budget.

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